Thanks to a new decree law released as part of the state of emergency declared late on July 20 following a failed coup, Turkey’s government is now set to seize all the Turkish companies owned by businessmen somehow linked to the US-based Islamic Scholar Fethullah Gülen.
Before the live feed was cut from the Zaman building on that Friday in March, I watched police shoot rubber bullets into the crowd gathered to protest the paper’s seizure. Bloodied, the crowd retreated, still screaming for free speech but knowing hope was gone.
Sevgi Akarçeşme, former editor in chief of Today’s Zaman, recalls the night when the police raided the building of the most important and independent opposition newspaper in Turkey. «What happened to journalists today» she warns « can happen to citizens tomorrow».
Turkish government seized control of Zaman Newspaper, the largest and highly circulated newspaper in Turkey. The takeover is a violation of the freedom of press which is vital for every democratic state and requires political intervention from the international community.
Turkish police have raided the offices of Zaman, the country’s biggest newspaper, hours after a court ruling placed it under state control. Police entered the building in Istanbul late on Friday, firing tear gas at protesters who had gathered outside. Zaman is closely linked to the Hizmet movement of influential US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen. Turkey […]
The Turkish government’s seizure of Zaman, the largest-selling newspaper in Turkey, is an attack on the country’s human rights, civil society and freedom of expression and the media. In his effort to consolidate power and silence all dissent, president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s actions only serve to highlight his growing authoritarian tendencies.
Monday marks the first anniversary of a government-backed operation against prominent media groups in the country that resulted in the detention of dozens of individuals, mostly high ranked media personnel, and ever since that day pressure on critical journalists and news outlets has skyrocketed in the country, leading to the take-over and even closure of many media outlets and the incarceration of many journalists.
Today, the headquarters of among the few remaining independent media outlets were raided by the Erdogan regime. The directors, staff and journalists were forcibly removed from their position and replaced by Erdogan loyalists who pulled the plug on live broadcast.
On Monday October 26, 2015, upon a request by the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office, the Ankara 5th Criminal Peace Magistrate ordered that Koza Ipek Holding (with 22 companies) be put under receivership. Trustees from the pro-government Sabah-ATV media group were appointed to replace the current board of directors. After CNN Turk announced the receivership, the shares of Turkish mining firm Koza Altin slid more than 5 percent.
New York-based press advocacy group the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has called on Turkish authorities to immediately release Today’s Zaman Editor-in-Chief Bülent Keneş, condemning the arrest as a “relentless crackdown” on the press.
A group of Japanese journalists who came together with their Turkish colleagues at the Turkey-Japan Media Forum last week in Tokyo expressed shock at the pressure placed on independent media outlets by the Turkish government while speaking about the violation of media freedoms in Turkey.
An organization called the Law and Democracy Foundation which was established by lawyer Mehmet Ali Canlı, a Justice and Development Party (AK Party) hopeful in the June 7 general election, on Wednesday filed a criminal complaint against media organizations that publish the speeches of Fethullah Gülen, a renowned Islamic scholar.